What if?…The Rockers That May Have Never Been—A Story of Kiss

I am passionate about music, especially rock. One of my favourite bands is Kiss. When we hear one of their songs on the radio, songs like “I Was Made for Loving You” or “World Without Heroes,” I just sit back and enjoy. I don’t even give it a second thought.

However, these songs and so many of their other classics may have never been written or composed. The two lead men of Kiss, Gene Simmons (aka Gene Klein and originally named Chaim Witz) and Paul Stanley (aka Stanley Bert Eisen) are both lucky they were born.

Paul’s parents are Jewish. He was the second of two children. His mother came from a family that fled Nazi Germany to Amsterdam, Netherlands, and then to New York City. His father’s parents were from Poland.

His mother was born in Berlin, Germany on 16 November 1923, and fled the Nazi uprising. She lived briefly in Amsterdam, the Netherlands with her mother and stepfather before moving to New York City in 1939. If they had stayed in Germany, as so many others did, they definitely would have been subjected to the cruelty of the Nazi regime.

Gene Simmons’s start in life could have been even more uncertain. He was born on 25 August 1949, in Haifa, Israel, to Jewish immigrants from Hungary. His mother, Florence Klein (née Flóra Kovács), was born in Jánd and survived internment in Nazi concentration camps. She and her brother, Larry Klein, were the only members of the family to survive the Holocaust.

Florence/Flora was 19 when she was liberated on the 5th of May 1945 from the Mauthausen concentration camp by American troops.

I have written blogs about the Holocaust, contemplating how many talents were destroyed by this evil ideology and regime. Thankfully some people did survive, and their legacy produced talented people like Paul Stanley and Gene Simmons.

For some people, the Holocaust may seem like a distant bit of history, but this is how close the Holocaust still is.

Finishing up with my favourite Kiss song, I have chosen a video with the lyrics because of the song, “A World Without Heroes.” It has a powerful message that is still so poignant today.

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Sources

https://www.thesound.co.nz/home/music/2020/05/kiss-gene-simmons-shown-his-mother-s-nazi-victim-impact-statement.html

https://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/gene-simmons

https://www.geni.com/people/Eva-Eisen/6000000002765905416

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